Coutinho: Will Jose Reyes Be A Met In 2012?

By Rich Coutinho
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There has been so much chatter about the possible trade of Jose Reyes that I felt compelled to set the record straight.

Jose Reyes is the most unique talent in the game of baseball. He combines great defensive prowess with speed, agility, a power arm, and a passion to play the game that in my opinion is unmatched by any shortstop in baseball. The Met organization is fully aware of his value, to both the team and the Met brand. And Reyes loves it in New York and wants to stay–if the deal is right.

For that reason, I can not see him being dealt to another team in a rental situation. First of all, if a minority owner is in place by the deadline, everything could quickly change for the Mets in regards to available dollars to add high-ticket personnel. Secondly, both parties need each other. The Mets need Reyes because he is a GREAT player–not a good player, not a very good player–a GREAT player. When he is healthy, the Mets win and when he is not healthy they lose. When he scores a run, they generally win, when he does not score a run they generally lose.

And Jose needs the Mets. He grew up here and has been part of some successful teams and more importantly, David Wright and Reyes have always been connected at the hip.  I have always felt both are part of the solution, not part of the problem. I will never forget that last game in 2008 and how hard Reyes took losing that day. At the time he said, “I love these fans because they have always been so good to me and they deserve to have a winner. I know they feel as bad as me because I know I let them down.” Now, does that sound like a player that doesn’t care.

I have gotten to know Reyes very well in the past few years and quite frankly, there is not a finer person in baseball. On Sunday, while most players were getting ready to play, Jose spoke about Mother’s Day and how every baseball player should do what they can to donate money for Breast Cancer Awareness because as he put it, “Your Dad teaches you to play but it is your Mom that makes sure you get to the field on time.”

There are a few players in this sport that have the “It Factor” as I call it–that passion for the game that makes you watch them, and Jose Reyes has that. More importantly, he can evoke passion from teammates. And we all know what a debilitating effect he has on opposing teams when he is wreaking havoc on the bases. When people  suggest to me that Reyes is not worth the money I think about a conversation I had with him when he was going through his thyroid issues. We were sitting on the home dugout in Port St. Lucie, and Jose told me, “Rich, this is killing me because I can not remember a day in my life where I was not thinking about baseball and now I can’t think of it because it will drive me crazy.”

Now, I am no economic expert when it comes to team finances but I will say this–you can not put a price tag on that type of compelling passion, coupled with skills that you do not stumble across every day in baseball. So, before the Mets consider not retaining Reyes, they need to consider what they would be losing and how much money it will cost them down the road.

Losing him would be catastrophic–especially if he lands down the turnpike or–perish the thought–in Yankee pinstripes.

  • Kurt Spitzner


  • Tom

    Yup, Jose Reyes isn’t worth buidling a team around. He’s no good because he doesn’t drive in 100 runs a year or hasn’t won an MVP. He’s no good because his team hasn’t won a title. Yup, superb logic.

    What leadoff man drives ion 100 runs? None. Reyes scores over 100, that’s for sure. When he’s healthy, which has been more than the critics give him credit for, he is a game-changing player that drives the ball to the gaps, creates runs, creates opportunities for his teammates batting behind him, steals bases, induces mistakes by pitchers as they worry about him on the basepaths, and plays great defense.

    I forgot that you had to be an MVP to be considered a good player or for a team to build around you. If that were the case then the majority of players in the Hall of Fame must suck because they never won an MVP.

    It’s also solely Reyes’ fault the Mets haven’t won. It’sd no that the supporting cast might not have been up to par. It’s a 25- man effort in baseball, a TEAM game. It takes more than one player, and he is more a part of the solution than the problem with the Mets, And it was while he was SS that they won a division, so they have won something while he’s been here, albeit not the ultimate goal.

    Sure contract years motivate players, but anyone who has watched Reyes for the past nione years sees how much he loves to play the game. He smiles and laughs and has fun as it should be as other buys go through the motions.

    Lastly, the idea that David Wright is an average player is blatantly ridiculous. If that’s so then every 3B in the league bats. 300, drives in 100, hits 30 HRs every year. That’s not the case as we all know.

    • It's Not A Lie If You Believe It

      So answer this question Tom “Old Wise One” if both these players are so good, why haven’t the Mets won a title? This should be easy for you to answer & don’t give us this injury excuse nonsense.

      You make both these players like they’re Mantle & Mays. Why haven’t the Mets won with Reyes & Wright? That’s the question. It takes more than a team to win, you also got to have heart & be the man when the game is on the line & both these players have a history of choking in important games. This is why; as long as both are Mets the Mets will never win a title. ’07 & ’08 historical choke should be a reminder.

      • Tom

        I’m not going to use injuries as an excuse because Wright -outside of when he got drilled in the head by Matt Cain – was never on the DL before. You can be a good a player, a great player even and not win a title. There are a lot of examples. Do you truly believe the 2007 and 2008 chokes should sit solely on Reyes and Wright’s shoulders?

        I agree winning teams show heart, resliency and an ability to thrive in the clutch. If you look at Wright’s career, the first 3-4 years he was clutch. He was also great with two strikes on him. Since then his clutchness has wavered, but it was once there. Was A-rod considered a worse player because he was unclutch as recently as 2008? No, still a great ballplayer.

        As for Reyes, I do remeber him hit a game-winning homer in Game 6 of the NLCS in 2006 to keep us alive, but I guess that doesn’t count. Basbeall is a funny game and a lot goes into winning is all I was saying.

        OK, so you don’t want either to be Mets. Try replacing them with something even close to how talented they are. Try to get a leadoff man/shortstop like Reyes and a thrid baseman like Wright. It’s not gonna happen. If tyou trade them for propsects ytu’re taking a risk because athe majority of prospects are just that – prospects – and they don’t pan out. Plus. in Reyes’ case, no one is going to emty the cupboard for you for a player who can just walk away at the end of the year. Even holding on to him for compensatory picks might prove the better route if he is not re-signed.

        To say they Mets will never win with these guys is your opinion and you’re entitled to it. I happen to feel differently and believe they are part of the solution more than they are part of the problem. If they aren’t part of the solution then no one on this team is. Can you justify anyone else as being part of that solution? Johan Santana was thought to be that missing piece and the team hasn’t made the playoffs since he became a Met. If he wasn’t hurt right now and continued to pitch as he did in his first few season in New York, would you be calling for him to be traded just because the team didn’t win as you are for Reyes and Wright.

        I never once said their Mantle and Mays. Not once didn’t I even hint at that. I simply stated their positive attributes. If you don’t see them as All-Star caliber players then you aren’t watching. If ytou don’t view Wright as a top 5 third baseman and agree with the other poster that he’s average you haven’t watched this guy’s career. Average players don’t put up the numbers he has since 2004.

        And as for the “Old Wise One” comment, I wasn’t p[ersonally attacking anyone with my post. I was engaging in a debate and stating my point of view as have so many others. All I know is I am a baseball fan and a Mets fan in particular and I view the future of the team in one way while others may disagree. But somewhere in here I must have said I am wiser than everyone else and I am the end-all be-all voice in this coversation. No. Never said that. What fun would that be? Just trying to have a sports conversation, that’s all.

      • Tom G

        spoken like a true stankee fan– by your logic- A-rod wasn’t a good player UNTIL he won with the stankees.
        Ken Griffey Jr– well he was NEVER a good player.
        Ernie Banks? Nope- not a good player.
        your logic is terribly flawed there stankee fan.
        Funny thing is- guys like you will be screaming for the stankees to sign Reyes next year. Typical stankee fan.

      • Dr. Who

        Tom G. 25 yrs without a championship with no hope in the future of seeing another one & witness seeing the Yankees win championships after championship would make any frustrated Mets fan jealous, envy, angry & stupid.

        You have the symptoms, seek medical help before you blow your brain out, wait, you’re a Mets fan, you have no brain, you’re an idiot

    • It's Not A Lie

      OK Tom so tell me, they re-signed Reyes & re-signed Wright (2012 free agent) for 18-22 mil a year for each because Reyes wants Crawford money. Mets already said they will cut the payroll of $140 mil.

      They have Santana making 23 mil a yr & Bay at 16 mil a yr, that’s 4 players for a total of say 70 – 75 mil on the payroll. With the payroll being cut, Mets still need starting pitching to go with Santana & that’s if Santana comes back healthy.

      The starting outfield is weak, so the Mets have to find a way to make it better, your catcher can’t hit or field so the Mets will need a starting catcher & let’s not forget the bullpen, it’s terrible & as I’m sure you & all the Mets fans are aware of, the Mets farm systems is pretty bad.

      So, how can the Mets compete for the next few years with all the problems they have in putting a team together by cutting the payroll & having to resign both Reyes & Wright for a huge amount of money. They haven’t won with Reyes & Wright in the past when they had better teams; do you really think the Mets can win with them now when they go into rebuilding?

      The answer my friend is no, why, like I’ve said before, both are good players but not great players, if so, they would have won in ’06, ’07 or ’08, so how can they win with a team with less talent & Reyes & Wright?

      • Tom

        First off, Wright is under contract, so you dont’ have to even think of re-signing him for two more years. Reyes obviously is a different story. I find it hard to believe that everyone knows exactly what the payorll will be when the aWilpons probably don’t even know the exact figures yet. I also like how because Crawford got that outrageous contract it is now definitive that Reyes is getting that or more – or that he will even ask for that. I am not naive, I realized they haven’t won with these guys but you can’t just cut bait with your best players for the sake of doing so. Rebuilding is a process and to meet all the need you brought up takes more than one season anyway, you;re not going to fill all you needs in one off-season. But you bring up some valid points, I just feel you’re not going to get players better than them whether it is via a trade, free agency, etc. That’s all. I also don’t believe you can go into full rebuilding mode in New York like you can in other markets. It will all play out, no one knows anything for sure, but I see your point of view.

  • Rich

    WHO CARES??? The Mets are a miserable organization from top to bottom.

    • MasterShake

      I care.

    • MetFanSince69

      Why are you reading this, troll? Go back to the Phillies blogs.

  • jonny

    The Reyes detractors are probably Phillies or Yanks fans on here talking him down but hoping their team gets him. Reyes has to stay period. Get rid of Wright he really hasn’t done anything in the clutch hitting wise and is an average 3rd baseman. Trade Beltran for some good pitching prospects because that is the mets down fall. If they do get rid of Reyes and get prospects that don’t wwork out(like other trades in the past) You will not be able to give tickets away Citi field! Reyes needs to be a Met for his career!

    • Ha, Ha, Ha

      Jonny, it sounds more like you’re the one who’s really worry about Reyes going to the Yankees or Phillies. Do both teams really need a shortstop? no, but anything can happen, also remember once Reyes becomes a free agent he can choose where he wants to go & who he wants to play for.

      If the Mets are not willing to pay him those two teams you mentioned can, you can also add the Braves to the list, you remember the Braves, the team the Mets could not beat & had a hold of the NL East for over 14 straight seasons, so it may not be just the Yankees & Phillies you’re little black heart needs to worry about there Jonny boy.

      • MasterShake

        My little black heart thinks you are an idiot hahaha boy.

      • Ha, Ha, Ha

        sorry to disappoint you Master-bater

  • Scott

    I’m a yankee fan and boy would I love Jose Reyes. Met fans need a shrink if they think they don’t have an absolute jewel at SS. This guy defines catalyst. When he’s on, they win! That’s not a box score stat and it’s not something you find everyday. Met fans need to take a deep breath and think rationally about this otherwise this guy will be killing you for years when he’s a phillie.

  • Just The Facts

    Have you been paying attention to Reyes the last few years, other than stealing bases & hitting a few triples, what has Reyes done to help the Mets win? Mets have never won with Reyes. He’s a career .285 hitter, with a very low O.B.P at .337, which is really bad. Makes dumba$$ plays on the field & running mistakes.

    Reyes has never won an MVP or come close; Mets have never won with Reyes. Having a very good 1st month into a season does not make a player, 8 yrs in the big does. so you need to look at Reyes entire career not just 1 month.
    Let’s be clear, Reyes is not Ricky Henderson, not even close

    • MasterShake

      What are you talking about???

    • Just the REAL facts

      A “team” wins on pitching. To say Reyes is the reason the Mets haven’t won is not fact. Put enough good pitching on the Mets and they will win.

      • Just the facts & not dreams

        The Phillies won the WS in ’08 because they had Howard, Rollins, Utley, Wirth and just one pitcher in Hamels. As a Mets fan your delusional to think Reyes is a great player. Teams win with great players not lose with them. See above.

        By the way, this is the same Phillies team that TOOK, yes TOOK the division from the Mets in ’07 & ’08 when the Mets build a large lead & choked at the end both times, with Reyes & Wright being the reason why, they did nothing down the stretch. Howard, Utley & Rollins did.

      • tom

        The Mets’ chokes weren’t just Reyes and Wright’s faults. And great players always win? I guess Tony Gywnn, Ernie Banks, Ted Williams, Barry Bonds all sucked.

      • Just The Facts

        Tony Gywnn, Ernie Banks, Ted Williams, Barry Bonds were great players & all Hall of Famers, but Tom, be serious, let’s not put Reyes & Wright as great players, like all Mets fans you need to stop hitting that crack, you’re hallucinating.

        Other then Banks, all those great players you mentioned took their teams to the World Series, other then Gywnn, they all won MVPs, Gywnn won many batting titles & that Tom is what makes you a great player, sadly they did not win a title, but they are only a few who did not, all great players do win, should I give you a list of all the great ones who have? The list is huge.

        I’ll make it easy for you; I give you two names of good players who never will, Reyes & Wright, as long as they play for the Mets, why? because they’re not great, just good. You need to stop drinking that juice that Terry Collins is serving, even when the Mets lose he says they still played a great game, yet they find themselves in last place.

    • Just the REAL facts

      And if you look at Reyes entire career, it is excellent.

      • Just The Real Real Facts

        Reyes is a career .285 hitter, that’s not excellent, that’s just OK, but then again, these are the Mets we’re talking about even Bud Harrelson Mets fans consider a great player, well, at least he won a title.

        The Mets haven’t won with this LOSER Reyes. Say good-bye to your baby boy mom, he’s good as gone. Adios!!!, but don’t cry, you have no hit, no power Tejada waiting to take over shortstop.

        How’s last place these days, with Wright & Reyes?

      • Tom

        How has last place been for most of your team’s existence. Hang your hat on being the only pro sports franchise with 10,000 losses.

      • Tom

        If the Mets are so pathetic why do you waste your time debating about this stuff? Why do you seem so threatened by Reyes and happy he may be leaving? Enjoy success while it last because what goes around comes around and it’s headed to a place near you very soon.

  • dmp

    I agree with Geoff! We can’t let Jose go. I know my 14 old will be saying goodbye to the Mets if Reyes or Wright are traded. He likes both the Yankees and the Mets since I’m the Met fan and his dad the Yankee fan, but if his two FAVORITE players are traded…he is done with the Mets. I think his whole generation will head over to the Bronx if their favorite players are traded…..

  • jc

    ” and a passion to play the game that in my opinion is unmatched by any shortstop in baseball.” What a joke this statement is!!!!!

    • Just the facts

      You’re right on that. Where has this passion to play the game been the last 8 seasons? Every player who’s on his last year of a contract excels. Bay, Beltran, Burnett, Hampton, Brown, Vernon Wells, Alfonso Soriano all signed huge contracts after having a great year. Look what happened after.

      Also, Reyes is not a player you signed to build a team around; he’s good, but not a great player. Pujols, Howard, A-Rod those players you build a team around, not a career .285 hitter like Reyes, with no power & does not drive in over 100 plus runs. He’s only a lead-off hitter once in the game, when guys are on base Reyes doesn’t do anything.

      • Just the REAL facts

        You obviously aren’t even a Mets fan because if you were you would have seen this passion everyday Reyes is on the field.

        Reyes is a player you do build around. A-Rod at this stage in his career is NOT. The Yankees overpaid an aging ex-juicer. I’d rather overpay Reyes at his age than the grotesque amount of money the Yankees paid for A-Fraud.

  • melissa

    Mets are point blank and simple stupid…jose is the whole team if they want to trade someone they need to trade david wright he is very over rated

  • dabooch

    Common now Reyes has been a dog since he got to New York. The only reason Jose’-Jose’ is busting his ass is because of the potential to get a contract north of one hundred million. The Wilpon’s should take partners on that have money, i could bring $100 to the table, but more importantly the minority advice would be to let the islander walk or better yet put a boot in his rear end and get him out faster.

    • Geoff

      Anyone who wants Jose Reyes gone is clearly NOT WATCHING. Yes, he’s motivated by being in a walk year, but so what!? When he’s hot, you can not get him out, and even when he’s cold, he’s taking runs away defensively. The only shortstop in baseball TODAY that has similar skills is Tulo on the Rockies,…and he doesn’t change the game with his speed like Reyes does. He is the one player we can’t afford to lose!!!

      • MasterShake

        I agree. There isn’t a player in baseball who doesn’t feel extra motivation in his walk year. Those Reyes detractors are just a bunch of bitter yankee fans who are crying their little eyes out over the fact that Jeter is on a downward spiral.

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